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Do keyword research services actually matter?

Written by Gary Honold on . Posted in .
Home > Blog > Do keyword research services actually matter?

Key takeaways:

  • Search engine ranking is heavily dependent on keywords.
  • If you’re not doing the research to know which keywords to incorporate, you could be wasting time, giving your competitors the edge, and wasting your money.
  • There are strategies that can help you build a strong keyword research plan, and we have some recommendations for the tools to use.
  • As an SEO agency, Array Digital can also take the load off your shoulders and help you every step of the way.

Nowadays, writing content that you deem helpful to a potential client is likely not enough to attract any visitors to your site. The digital world is growing, and with it, so is your competition. So, your content needs to be optimized.

To be seen by your future clients, your legal site needs to stand out. Knowing what type of content will be visible to potential clients starts with keyword research.

Finding keywords to drive results can be difficult to do alongside helping your clients with legal issues. This is where the content and law firm SEO strategists at Array Digital come in. Our strategists are well-versed in keyword research and competitor analysis. Let us guide your digital strategy in the right direction.

What is keyword research for lawyers?

graphic showing keywords and search volume

Search engines value websites based on how well the content on the web page matches the needs of the person searching for that information (the person we call the searcher). To do this, search engines utilize keywords — words that people type into the search engines — to determine where to send users. This also factors in search intent or what the person is really looking for when they use those terms.

If you are a law firm specializing in personal injury, you obviously need to incorporate keywords like “law firm” and “personal injury” on your website pages. However, there are two critical aspects to remember.

  • There are a ton of lawyer websites that you’re trying to compete with for keywords. As a result, you absolutely have to pick and choose the right keywords where there’s an opportunity to rank.
  • You need to focus on high-intent keywords that draw in your target audience – the people most likely to use your services (which are often local clients).

You need to determine what keywords your target audience is searching. Then, design a marketing strategy that targets these very specific keywords.

We do this through the keyword research process, an elaborate step-by-step process that helps us to make decisions about the right keywords to use so we are ranking well in the search engine results page (SERPs) while also marketing where there are opportunities to capture real clients for you.

Keyword research can be used for numerous steps:

  • SEO – search engine optimization, which is what helps with ranking
  • Content strategy – your content marketing strategy should focus on keywords people are using
  • PPC purposes – pay-per-click advertising, a paid form of marketing

Your marketing strategy should focus on what people are typing into the search engines. Keyword rankings are not based on shoving dozens of words you think people are typing into the search bar. They are refined and effective.

Let’s not forget that once you get all of that great organic traffic to your website from these search queries, you want those clients to see that you’re the attorney for the job. Over-stuffed, poorly designed, and hard-to-follow websites cost you leads.

Conducting keyword research to find the best keyword

Before you invest money into marketing efforts that don’t pay off, let’s focus on creating really great content that works for the algorithms and potential customers or clients.

To do that, we need to know where you stand right now.

A website audit from Array Digital can help with this.

  • We will find out which keywords you are ranking for already.
  • We’ll look for keyword opportunities or gaps where your competitors are lacking that could drive more leads to your site.
  • We’ll address keyword difficulty concerns, being transparent with you about how likely you are to rank for a coveted term.

This research provides us with a solid starting point. We can then utilize your marketing efforts strategically to start off on the right foot while creating high-quality content that helps support Google search rankings.

Keyword research tools for lawyers

screen shot from ahrefs

Finding relevant keywords requires some work. Remember that your entire SEO strategy will be dependent on these keywords. When it comes down to it, then, you need SEO experts to advise you.

If you’re hoping to do some of the work yourself, keyword research tools can do the heavy lifting for you. Numerous tools and methods exist for conducting keyword research. You’ll need to know:

  • How to choose them based on search volume and intent
  • How and where to incorporate them into your content
  • How to choose search terms that align with your business goals
  • How to build out your SEO campaign around those keywords in a meaningful way
  • How to refine your keywords over time using those SEO tools

Some of the most robust keyword research tools are:

  • Moz
  • Ahrefs
  • SE Rankings
  • Semrush
  • Ubersuggest
  • KWFinder

Once you conduct keyword research, create a list of your ideal terms. Then, deeply analyze those keywords on the list:

  • Do the keywords on the list really fit your law firm?
  • What is the person typing those keywords into the search engines really looking for? That’s cause searcher intent.
  • Is your page going to offer exactly what they are looking for when they type those keywords?

For ideas on the best keywords for lawyers to target, check out our keyword research guide.

Here’s another way to develop website content using an alternative keyword research strategy. Utilize online legal forums.

  • Use these forums to get inspiration.
  • What are people searching for who need your help?
  • What types of questions are they asking?
  • Look at the user intent here – are they looking for the services you offer? If so, create content around those questions.
  • Use Google Analytics to track your SEO progress over time. Which pieces are performing well (which means they are producing conversions and which do not garner the traffic?

As for forums, here are our favorites:

  • Quora
  • Reddit
  • Avvo

The importance of keyword research for law firm SEO

Digital marketing is the process of advertising your business online.

As an attorney, you need to understand the importance of keyword research. When you invest in proper research, several key things happen:

  • You don’t spend money on keywords that are impossible to use to obtain leads.
  • The right keywords will help your small business or law firm to grow both in branding and organic traffic.
  • SEO is far more affordable over the long term than paying for leads through PPC campaigns.
  • New keywords appear monthly. That is, new trends in keyword use will occur. Without some planning, you cannot achieve a rank for those keywords.
  • When you use the right keywords, you will rank higher in the search engines. That can lead to improved conversion rates.

Keyword research is part of the foundation that builds your SEO campaign. This type of service can help identify a target audience and assist in writing content that is more likely to rank in a search engine and be seen by your desired audience.

Why law firms partner with Array Digital

As a law firm, not only do you need to ensure you’re ranking with the right search engines, but you also absolutely have to demonstrate high authority, expertise, and experience, all factors Google looks at when choosing which law firm websites to rank the highest.

That’s why it can be so important to work with a trusted, highly expected marketing agency that knows the unique challenges law firms face. At Array Digital, we bring the expertise, experience, and credibility you need to the table. We listen to our clients and then create custom strategies for them.


“Kevin is an absolute pleasure to work with. He’s a marketing expert with total focus and loads of energy. Cannot recommend him highly enough. Connect with Kevin and find out how he can help you grow your business.” -John M.

“Kevin and the Array Digital team are exceptional at what they do! If you are looking to grow your law firm, look no further. Array is the expert team that you need to take the complexities of digital marketing off of your plate and bring customers that need you to your doorstep.” — Greg T.

“Highly recommend Array Digital. Prior to bringing them on board, I tried to manage all the different marketing aspects of my firm by myself. As a result, my marketing was all over the place. Since hiring Array, everything is under one roof and organized. They communicate very well and genuinely care about their clients.” — Chris S.

Additional resources for SEO Keyword Research Services and Tools

Are you still wondering where to get started? Knowing what to do first can be a challenge. You have every right to be cautious about it. Let’s answer some of your biggest questions.

  • SEO is Dead: Change My Mind: Check out this article on how to actually use SEO as a law firm and the most common mistakes that people make when trying to implement it themselves.
  • A Lawyer’s Guide to E-E-A-T: An Introduction: This is critical – before you invest any time or money into SEO, you have to understand the intense requirements Google places on attorney websites through the E-E-A-T standard.
  • Keys to Making Your Law Firm’s Web Content Unique: Let’s not forget the client. You can use any of the tools here to help your business, but you also have to create content that’s unique and interesting to your readers.

Write content that ranks

Array Digital provides every tool and resource you need to build your website’s performance in Google, driving traffic to your website that converts. Let’s talk about how to do that. Contact us at 757-333-3021 or fill out our contact form now.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between short-tail and long-tail keywords in keyword research?

When we consider the keywords we use, we have to think about the competition and how hard it will be to rank for them.

There are about 450,000 law firms in the US. Most of them have a website. If you try to rank for the short-tail keyword, like “law firm,” that’s a huge investment, and even with a big budget, it’s not likely you’ll get there.

Google will automatically use the searcher’s location to determine which law firms to present to them in the search results. If you go after the term “law firm” virtually guarantees that you will never be found in any search because you are not optimizing for location.

Long-tail keywords have far less competition. That means there are far fewer law firms trying to rank for these website keywords. However, there’s another benefit – search intent.

A person typing in a long-tail keyword is looking for something very specific often in a specific area. They are typically very close to making the decision to call an attorney. By targeting these keywords, we are able to bring in not only more traffic because your site ranks higher but more of the traffic that gets results.

Someone searching questions like “How much does a lawyer cost in Virginia Beach after a car accident?” is very much what you’re looking to rank for and the target of your goals.

How do keyword research services improve my website’s SEO?

When it comes to pricing, hiring an SEO agency can seem like an expensive investment. However, before you write off that as too expensive, consider how an SEO agency can directly impact your business model:

  • We increase the visibility of the website on Google, where most people go to find an attorney.
  • We drive better quality traffic to your website when we create a custom SEO audit.
  • We learn what your competitors are targeting and find gaps that we can exploit for your benefit.
  • We create a link building strategy that incorporates backlinks.

The end result? We help you get more leads. That helps you build your law firm.

Written By Gary Honold
I am a digital marketer and SEO manager with 30+ years’ experience driving web traffic, leads, and conversions for clients in highly competitive markets.

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